Sarah dies and Abraham buries her
1Sarah lived for 127 years. 2She died in the land of Canaan, at Kiriath Arba. That place is also called Hebron. Abraham was very sad. He went to her tent and he cried very much, because she was dead.
3Then Abraham went to the Hittite people and he said to them, 4‘I am living as a stranger among you. Please, sell me some land here, so that it belongs to me. Then I can use it to bury my wife properly.’
5The Hittites replied, 6‘Sir, please listen to what we say. We respect you as a great and powerful person. We have good places where we bury our people who have died. Choose the best one that you like. None of us will refuse to give you the place that you choose. Then you will be able to bury your dead wife there.’
7Abraham stood up. He turned his face towards the ground to respect the Hittites who lived in that place. 8He said to them, ‘Since you have agreed to help me, please do this. Speak to Zohar's son, Ephron, for me. 9Ask him to sell the cave of Machpelah to me. It belongs to Ephron. It is at the edge of his field. You will see that I pay the proper price to him. Then it will belong to me. I can bury my family there when they die.’
10Ephron was sitting there with his people, at the city gate. He spoke so that all the Hittites could hear him. 11Ephron said, ‘No sir. Please listen to me. You may take my field as well as the cave. I promise in front of my people that I will give all this to you. Then you can bury your dead wife there.’
12Abraham again turned his face towards the ground to respect the people who lived in that place. 13While they were listening, he said to Ephron, ‘Let me say this. I will pay you the price to buy the field. Please accept the money from me. Then I can bury my dead wife there.’
14Ephron replied to Abraham, 15‘Listen to me, sir. The land is worth 400 shekels of silver. But the price is not important, because we are friends. Now bury your dead wife there.’ #23:15 People used shekels to measure weight. Ephron is telling Abraham how much the land will cost. He knows that Abraham will not accept the field as a gift. This is the way that people would agree to a price.
16Abraham agreed to the price that Ephron had asked for. He weighed the correct amount of silver to give to Ephron. The Hittites there knew that it had been done properly. The weight of 400 shekels agreed with the weights that people used at that time.
17In that way, Ephron's field in Machpelah, near Mamre, now belonged to Abraham. This included the field, the cave in the field and all the trees in the field as far as its edge. 18All the Hittite people who were sitting there at the city gate agreed that Abraham was the new owner.
19After this, Abraham buried his wife, Sarah, in the cave in the field of Machpelah. This field was near Mamre, in the land of Canaan. That place is also called Hebron. 20That is how Abraham bought the field and the cave that was in it from the Hittite people. He bought it so that he could bury there his family who died.
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1Sarah lived to be one hundred twenty-seven years old. 2She died in Kiriath Arba (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan. Abraham was very sad and cried because of her. 3After a while he got up from the side of his wife’s body and went to talk to the Hittites. He said, 4“I am only a stranger and a foreigner here. Sell me some of your land so that I can bury my dead wife.”
5The Hittites answered Abraham, 6“Sir, you are a great leader among us. You may have the best place we have to bury your dead. You may have any of our burying places that you want, and none of us will stop you from burying your dead wife.”
7Abraham rose and bowed to the people of the land, the Hittites. 8He said to them, “If you truly want to help me bury my dead wife here, speak to Ephron, the son of Zohar for me. 9Ask him to sell me the cave of Machpelah at the edge of his field. I will pay him the full price. You can be the witnesses that I am buying it as a burial place.”
10Ephron was sitting among the Hittites at the city gate. He answered Abraham, 11“No, sir. I will give you the land and the cave that is in it, with these people as witnesses. Bury your dead wife.”
12Then Abraham bowed down before the Hittites. 13He said to Ephron before all the people, “Please let me pay you the full price for the field. Accept my money, and I will bury my dead there.”
14Ephron answered Abraham, 15“Sir, the land is worth ten pounds of silver, but I won’t argue with you over the price. Take the land, and bury your dead wife.”
16Abraham agreed and paid Ephron in front of the Hittite witnesses. He weighed out the full price, ten pounds of silver, and they counted the weight as the traders normally did.
17-18So Ephron’s field in Machpelah, east of Mamre, was sold. Abraham became the owner of the field, the cave in it, and all the trees that were in the field. The sale was made at the city gate, with the Hittites as witnesses. 19After this, Abraham buried his wife Sarah in the cave in the field of Machpelah, near Mamre. (Mamre was later called Hebron in the land of Canaan.) 20So Abraham bought the field and the cave in it from the Hittites to use as a burying place.
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The Holy Bible, New Century Version, Copyright © 2005 Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved.